Last week, 26 Trinity students, all members of Kid Companions, returned to the St. Benedict Children Home in Georgetown, St. Vincent. The student group has had a long-running relationship with a handful of children's homes around the island, most of which serve special needs orphans. This visit, two groups were combined; residents of the Bread of Life orphanage visited their friends at St. Benedict to provide greater opportunity for interaction and play.
Sister Nyra-Anne Pajote, director of St. Benedict’s, welcomed the students to their first visit of the new year, “I’m so glad that Kid Companions are back to help us with the children. As you know, we enjoy each and every time they come. We’re happy to have them back and I’m sure the kids are even happier than I am.” She added later, “They [the students] interact so well with the children. They do arts and crafts with them, take them to the park and socialize with them. The children so look forward to it. The volume level of the entire building jumps when the bus from Trinity arrives. The children all cheer.”
Every trip follows a similar pattern, games and art projects, with care taken to meet the adaptive needs of each child. They participate in groups and with designated student-buddies, to maximize the fun and benefit of social interactions for the group home's residents. Trinity students also bring donations, some gifts of toys and art supplies, often additional bedding, clothing, and toiletries.
New club member and second term student, Lauren Sprague, commented, “I just joined Kid Companions at the beginning of this term. Today was a really good experience for me. Getting to give back to the kids felt good; everyone here in St. Vincent has been so nice to us. I can’t wait to come back next time when we put on a carnival for the kids.”
Group president Sam Brosman acknowledged, “Over the [holiday] break, we’d been putting together plans about what we are going to do for this year. At the start of the term, our numbers increased and we realized we could definitely step things up. Being here with the kids also always renews our commitment to serve them and be a reliable source of joy in their lives. It's going to be a big year for us."
Kid Companions is just one of many Trinity groups that is entirely student driven but nonetheless an integral part of the school experience. The opportunity to make a difference in people's lives is one of the reasons many people go to medical school in the first place. For others, it's also a continuous opportunity to sharpen communication skills and bedside manner, both integral to successful careers in medicine.
We could not be more proud of our students. If you'd like to find out more about Kid Companions or life at Trinity, feel free to contact us here.